[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Council of the Township of Evesham 12-14-1982 by Ord. No. 47-12-82. Amendments noted where applicable.]
The purpose of this chapter is to establish regulations concerning the operation and maintenance of certain alarm systems within the Township of Evesham.
For the purpose of this chapter, certain words and phrases are defined as follows:
- ALARM SYSTEM
- Any mechanical, electrical or electronic device which is designed or used for the detection of an unauthorized entry into a building, structure or facility or for alerting others about the commission of an unlawful act within a building, structure or facility or for alerting others about the existence of any other condition requiring response of police, fire or ambulance personnel and which emits and/or transmits an audible and/or visual signal or message when actuated. Alarm systems include, but are not limited to, direct-dial telephone devices, audible alarms and subscriber alarms.
- AUDIBLE ALARM
- A device that emits an audible signal from the premises that it is designed to protect.
- CHIEF OF POLICE
- The Chief of Police or his authorized representative.
- COMMUNICATIONS CENTER
- The location from which police radio messages are normally transmitted and alarm monitoring equipment is installed.
- DIRECT-DIAL ALARM
- A device that, when actuated, causes a recorded message to be transmitted, via telephone, to the Burlington County Communications Center, stating that an emergency response is necessary.
- EMERGENCY PHONE NUMBER
- The primary phone number advertised to the public for requesting emergency services.
- FALSE ALARM
- An alarm signal necessitating response by the Evesham Township police, fire or any other emergency personnel where an emergency situation does not exist. An alarm that has been activated by an external source that is beyond the reasonable control of the subscriber, his employees, agents or representatives shall not be considered false.
- Evesham Township Police.
- SUBSCRIBER ALARM
- An alarm system that is terminated by direct connection to the connection to the communications center.
- The Township of Evesham.
It shall be the responsibility of all persons, entities, firms, corporations or other groups that maintain alarm systems within the Township to provide current information to the police, consisting of the names and telephone numbers of responsible persons who may be contacted to respond in case of emergency or who are authorized to provide service to the alarm system, either must be on a twenty-four-hour basis. This information is to be filed with the police when the alarm system is initially placed into service and must be revised immediately whenever changes are necessary.
Audible alarms must be silenced within 60 minutes after a designated responsible person is notified to do so by the police, or the alarm system may be equipped with a timing device that will automatically silence the audible alarm within 60 minutes after it is actuated.
The direct-dial alarms shall not be connected to the police emergency phone number. A secondary phone will be provided for direct-dial alarms only. Direct-dial alarms must be equipped with a device that will prevent more than three repeated transmissions of an alarm for the same emergencies to the communications center. Recorded messages must also include the name and telephone number of a responsible person who may be contacted by the police in case of an emergency, on a twenty-four-hour basis. In addition to notifying the police, all alarms will simultaneously, and by the quickest means possible, notify the subscriber or an appropriate monitoring facility who will report the date, time, location and nature of the alarm to the subscriber.
[Amended 4-16-1991 by Ord. No. 17-4-91]
As a condition of connecting an alarm system either by direct connection or telephonic connection to Township emergency services, it shall be the responsibility of all persons or entities who have such alarm systems within the Township to prevent the transmission of false alarms. In the event that the number of false alarms from a single location should exceed six during the calendar year, the owner of the alarm system shall pay a service charge as set forth in § 43-4A.
[Amended 10-20-1987 by Ord. No. 45-10-87]
A false alarm is hereby determined to be a violation of the provisions of this chapter and shall subject the property owner to fines and penalties as hereinafter provided.
[Amended 10-20-1987 by Ord. No. 45-10-87; 4-16-1991 by Ord. No. 17-4-91; 8-4-1992 by Ord. No. 17-8-92]
If in the judgment of the Chief of Police any alarm system becomes a nuisance to the police as a result of excessive false alarms, the Chief of Police may take the necessary action to correct the problem, in addition to any service charge imposed, in the following manner:
Terminating the subscriber alarm at the communications center or disconnection from telephone lines.
Instructing members of the Police Department not to respond to additional alarms until the subscriber indicates in writing the steps that are taken or will be taken to correct the false alarm problem.
Any person, entity, firm or corporation which installs or maintains any alarm equipment within the Township of Evesham or at the communications center shall provide, on a monthly basis, a report of all subscribers and the number of actual and false alarms received by that monitoring equipment. Such reports will be forwarded to the Finance Department of the Township for the purpose of billing the service charge described in Subsection A above.
The Chief of Police is authorized to discontinue response to any alarm where false alarm service charges are outstanding. After notification of payment due, a subscriber will have 30 days in which to make full payment.
[Added 4-16-1991 by Ord. No. 17-4-91]
The provisions of this chapter shall not apply to the general alerting alarms that may be used by fire companies, ambulance squads or civil defense agencies to summon response of their members. The provisions of this chapter shall not apply to alarm systems that are affixed to motor vehicles.
The provisions contained herein shall apply equally to those alarm systems that were placed in service prior to or subsequent to the effective date of this chapter.
[Added 8-4-1992 by Ord. No. 17-8-92]
Any person violating any provisions of this chapter shall, upon conviction, be punishable as provided in § 1-15 of the Code of the Township of Evesham, except as otherwise provided herein.
Fines for false alarms.
Any person or entity whose alarm system(s) generates one, two, three or four false alarms in the calendar year shall not be subject to fine or penalty.
Any person or entity whose alarm system(s) generates more than four but fewer than seven false alarms in a calendar year shall, upon the receipt of a violation notice, pay a fine of $200 per false alarm, which, upon a guilty plea, may be paid through the Violations Bureau of the Municipal Court.
Any person or entity whose alarm system(s) generates seven or more but fewer than 10 false alarms in a calendar year shall, upon the receipt of a violation notice, pay a fine of $350 per false alarm, which, upon a guilty plea, may be paid through the Violations Bureau of the Municipal Court.
Any person or entity whose alarm system(s) generates 10 or more but fewer than 15 false alarms in a calendar year shall, upon the receipt of a violation notice, pay a fine of $500 per false alarm, which, upon a guilty plea, may be paid through the Violations Bureau of the Municipal Court.
Any person or entity whose alarm system(s) generates 15 or more false alarms in a calendar year shall, upon the receipt of a violation notice, be issued a summons per false alarm and shall be required to appear in court and be subject to the penalties set forth in § 1-15A of the Code of the Township of Evesham.